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Vanna - Void Award winner

Vanna
Void
by Dave “That Metal Guy” Campbell at 25 July 2014, 7:45 PM

VANNA is a Post-Hardcore band based out of Boston, Massachusetts.  This is their second full-length album, and contains eleven tracks.  The title track “Void” leads off the sonic assault.  From the opening note, it is evident that we are in for a full on assault.  There are shouted vocals and bombastic riffing, shifting from mid tempo to a thrash like pace, and as is typically heard in this genre, an all-out style of yelling dominates the sound here.  “Toxic Pretender” is an angst filled anthem of absolute hate and disgust.  They really do a nice job here of thickening out the style and blending in some outside elements that you don’t always here in this genre, including a clean vocal chorus.  This is a really strong track.  “Holy Hell” begins with a punk-ish feeling, but an unexpected melody line in the chorus really intrigues me.  At this point they are flirting with Metalcore, which is welcomed as far as I am concerned.  “Digging” takes the album in another direction altogether, with a pleasing, harmony laden opening, and some genuine lamenting vocals.  A big chorus really strengthens this piece, where the harsh vocals are still very assertive, but they let the melody breathe here. Circling back to brutality is the rocker called “Youth Decay,” and the crushing despondence of “Personal Decay,” where the message travels straight as an arrow to your brain stem, electrifying you alive.

“Humaphobia” is an exercise in contrast.  The instrumentation is slow, prodding and minimal, while the vocals wail relentlessly and in full attack mode.  “Piss Up a Rope” is just a straight up hardcore song, played at maximum intensity, like the next track, “Pornocopia.”  There is a clear identity of the band’s sound here, but with some nice change of pace elements that they work into their music, assuring it doesn’t all sound the same.  “All American’t” makes a nice political statement with the anger of the track.   “Bienvenue” closes the album, with a slow, soft, downtrodden melody, a mix of clean and harsh vocals, and another strong chorus.  If you aren’t totally spent after listening to this eleven track punishment on your senses, you might be dead.  The energy emoted here is very powerful, and very real.  I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised at their willingness to expand some out of the confines of the Post-Hardcore type of sound.  They do a really nice job of working in melody and keeping the sound fresh and accessible, without letting up on any of the drive and power.

 

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1.    Void
2.    Toxic Pretender
3.    Holy Hell
4.    Digging
5.    Yuth Decay
6.    Personal Decay
7.    Humaphobia
8.    Piss Up a Rope
9.    Pornocopia
10.  All American’t
11.  Bienvenue
Lineup:
Nick Lambert - Guitar
Davey Muise - Lead Vocalist
Shawn Marquis - Bass
Joel Pastuszak - Guitar
Eric Gross - Drums
Record Label: Pure Noise Records
     


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